War of the Rebellion: Serial 121 Page 0412 PRISONERS OF WAR AND STATE, ETC.

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prisoners in return. I have agreed, with your sanction, with Federal authorities for the laying of a pontoon bridge at this place for the purpose of carrying on such exchange. I am to furnish a guard on the left bank of Big Black and they a guard on the right bank. When I last saw General Forrest he proffered to send me a regiment to carry out the object of my visit to this point. I did not deem it necessary, and informed him so, as I thought the command here sufficient.

I hear that Captain John Wilkinson, of the Twenty-fourth Mississippi Battalion, is likely to be relieved from this post. I most respectfully ask that this shall not be done. I find him truce and worthy. In a short time I will be receiving a large number of Confederate prisoners, who will have to go into parole camp. They have been for a long time confined in Northern prisons, away from country, home, and friends. All will be anxious to go home. I have no military jurisdiction, and can only turn over these prisoners to military authority. You know how these men will straggle. You know how important it is for them to be with their commands. You know how incompetent the present number of Captain Wilkinsons' command is for these purpose; and for the good of our country I do ask most respectfully of you that instead of depleting his command you increase it fourfold, still retaining him in command. All agreements between Federals and Confederate I will send you copy of on Monday.

I am, general, your obedient servant,


Collector and Agent.


Camp Morton, Indianapolis, Ind., March 19, 1865.

Colonel A. A. STEVENS, Commanding Camp Morton:

SIR: I have the honor to submit the following inspection report of the condition of the prisoners of war at this station for the week ending March 18, 1865:

Conduct-very good. Cleanliness-good. State of clothing-good. Bedding-good. State of quarters-kept thoroughly policed. State of mess-houses-have none. State of kitchen-good. Food, quality of-first-class. Food, quantity of-sufficient. Water-sufficient. Sinks-sufficient. Police of grounds-thorough. Drainage-complete. Police of hospital-thorough. Attendance of sick-good. Hospital diet-first class. General health of prisoners-good. Vigilance of guard-very strict.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,


First Lieutenant, Veteran Reserve Corps, and Inspecting Officer.


Salisbury, N. C., March 19, 1865.

General S. COOPER,

Adjutant and Inspector General, Richmond, Va.:

GENERAL: I think arrangements should be made to accommodate, at least temporarily, the prisoners of war who may be captured by the army under command of General J. E. Johnston at some safe and convenient point. This place or its vicinity appears to me at suitable location. With this view I have sent an experienced officers, Colonel Forno, to select a place. Upon his return I shall direct that steps be taken to